I Can Never Get Ahead
My husband and I can never get ahead. We decided a long time ago that we always wanted one of us to stay home with our kids and daycare in Southern California is ridiculous. My husband has a degree in Computer Networking so we decided I would stay home, he will work. He brings home $2500 a month and with three kids we're not making it. I took a weekend bookkeeping job at a restaurant which gives us a monthly take home of $2900 a month. I also am taking a nanny job for another couple of hundred a month that I have yet to start. I have paying the bills almost down to a science, waiting until shut off notices arrive before I pay it, comparing pay dates to due dates. We shop at thrift stores, buy and sell on ebay to make extra cash and clothes for the kids but after five years of living this way, I want to know when or if it will ever get better. I'm in my mid thirties and the fact that I have never been able to go into a store and buy my kids new shoes, not hand me downs from ebay, is taking its toll. I'm feeling depressed and angry and when I think about it, I take it out on everyone around me. I snap at my kids when they ask if they can have a toy or if we can buy pizza. I know I shouldn't, it's not their fault and I shouldn't make them feel the pressure of being broke. I grew up that way, my mom always telling me we don't have money for this or that and how are we going to pay these bills? It's taken it's toll on my physically as well. I put on 50 lbs., I break out like a 15 year old school girl and nausea is a normal part of my day.
My husband, who grew up dirt poor acts like this is fine, there is nothing wrong with it. Are you kidding me? You're actually HAPPY living this way? Yes, I am thankful my kids are healthy and happy but what about long term, our kids future, OUR future once they've moved out? Can we afford to send them to community college, let alone a university? His lack of drive or concern for our welfare has affected my feelings for him. I tried to talk to him about this, he says I'm spoiled. I told him that I only have $1200 from a 401k from a few jobs ago, he said that should be enough.
I made a promise to myself though. I told myself, I'm going to finish college, get a degree and make something of myself. No more excuses. I'm always the one who can't afford to meet up with friends for dinner, or can't afford the vacations with our extended family and have gone too many Christmas' without giving any gifts including my own children.
My fear is that I will still be living paycheck to paycheck and having family members pay for me and my family when we get together in another 10 years when I'm 43. It is so embarrassing. I never thought my life would be this way. I pictured things differently. But don't we all, right? I get so down on myself, I have kids for crissakes that I can barely afford. If it weren't for my parents, I don't know where I'd be. They have saved the day on more than one occasion and I don't know how I can ever pay them back. I hate being my family's charity case but how, besides finishing college, can I get us out of this sooner than later?